Document Type



Brain and Mind Institute


The theme of the 2021 World Mental Health Day is “Mental Health in an Unequal World”, highlighting unequal access to mental health care across the world. This situation has been further worsened by governmental and public responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The response of many high-income countries (HICs) and institutions to the pandemic has been the reverse of equity, exemplified by inequitable access to COVID-19 vaccines and widening inequities in wealth.1 A crucial consideration in this context is the imbalance in social and economic factors that shape onset and outcomes of mental health across communities and countries.2 Looking through a lens of equity, some individuals and populations need greater—not equal— intensity of mental health promotion, prevention, and treatment efforts because of the constellation of adversities, social marginalisation, and burden of ill health they experience.


This work was published before the author joined Aga Khan University.

Publication (Name of Journal)

The Lancet